Sex Education and Condoms: What Age Should We Educate Our Children? Many parents cringe at the thought of discussing sex and sexuality with their children. They don’t feel very comfortable talking about it with their small and grown up kids. So when is really the right time to start the process? And where do you begin? Sex education is important and this should begin in early childhood, according to the experts. So if you’re a parent with a toddler and you think it’s too early to teach your child about sexuality, you may have to think again. A new report entitled National Sexuality Education Standards stressed the need for sexuality education in public schools. The report presented by representatives from the fields of health education, sexuality education, public health, public policy, philanthropy and advocacy was aimed at helping schools in designing and implementing sex education curriculum, presenting sexual development as a normal and healthy part of human development and offering recommendations to school personnel on what is age appropriate to teach students at various grade levels. The same report revealed that the U .S. has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates with more than 750,000 teens aged 15-19 getting pregnant every year. It added that one in four teens is contracting a sexually transmitted disease (STD) annually. Research has also shown that teens are more sexually active that what their parents think. By the age of 19, seven out of 10 of them have had sex already. Mayo Clinic suggests that parents start teaching their kids about their bodies when they learn to talk and walk. During bath time, for instance, you can teach your toddler the proper names that refer to their sex organs and when kids ask about their bodies, answer the questions directly according to what is appropriate for their age. Parents should not feel ashamed or embarrassed about this because it’s essential that you answer the questions as honestly as possible. Apart from their bodies, topics related to sexuality parents can discuss with their child as they grow up include how the different body parts work, human development, reproduction, types of relations, factors that make a relationship healthy or unhealthy, sexual behavior and ways to prevent unplanned pregnancy and STDs. Just make sure that you explain to them in a way that they can understand and always use age-appropriate terms. So as they grow more mature and ask detailed questions, you need to provide more specific answers as well. It may seem uncomfortable sometimes but take the courage to discuss it with them to promote an honest and educational discussion between you and your child. Starting sex education early on will enable parents to establish a good relationship with their child as they grow up. Reports say many teens consider their parents as the biggest influence in making decisions related to sex. Those who have an open communication line with their parents are also more likely to engage in sex later rather than earlier, have fewer partners and use condoms and other forms of contraceptives when they have sex.